MANAMA, Bahrain, Aug. 14 (UPI) -- Bahrain said Wednesday it was "business as usual" amid ongoing concerns over protests and a heavy police presence on the streets.
U.S. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters during her Tuesday press briefing Washington was concerned about the potential for violence in Bahrain.
"We remain very concerned about continuing incidents of violence in Bahrain and, of course, the possibility for violence and would urge all parties to strongly condemn violence and contribute to fostering a climate of dialogue and reconciliation," she said.
Bahrain has been criticized for its crackdown on government opponents. Dozens of people were killed in a 2011 uprising and the government has since enacted controversial laws restricting the right to assemble.
The official Bahrain News Agency said Wednesday there was a "heavy police presence" throughout the country though few incidents of violence were reported.
"It was business as usual as Bahrainis and expatriates reported to work on Wednesday just like any other day defying calls by radical opposition groups for road blockades and attack on properties," the official news agency said.
BNA reported police were checking identification cards as a precautionary measure and guarding key installations "to thwart any threats."
Human rights groups have questioned Bahrain's commitment to reforms spelled out by an independent commission of inquiry investigating the government's response to protests in 2011.